Undocumented Students or Dreamers

House Bill 60

Because federal financial aid is unavailable for undocumented students,  the State of Illinois passed bill HB 60 in 2003 making in-state tuition available for undocumented youth at public colleges and universities.

In order to be eligible for HB 60 in-state tuition rates, students must meet the following requirements:
  1. The student has resided with her/her parent or guardian while attending public or private high school in Illinois.
  2. The student has graduated from a public or private high school in Illinois or received a GED from Illinois.
  3. The student has attended school in Illinois for at least 3 years prior to graduating from high school or receiving the GED.
  4. For individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents of the United States, the student provides the university with an affidavit stating his/her intention to file an application to become a permanent resident of the United States as soon as he/she is eligible to do so.

Illinois Dream Act

This legislation made Illinois the first state in the country to create a private scholarship fund for undocumented youth. The Act also eases the path to higher education for undocumented youth, 65% of whom come from households that earn 200% under the poverty line. While not comparable to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the passage of the bill is an incredible victory that lays a foundation for other states to follow.

 

The Illinois DREAM Act:
  • Allows anyone with a taxpayer number, including undocumented students, to participate in the State Treasurer’s College Savings Pool and the Illinois Prepaid Tuition Plan. Both of these programs allow families of DREAM youths to plan ahead and invest and save for their children’s college education.
  • Requires high school college counselors to be better prepared to advise undocumented students and children of immigrants on their access to higher education. This ensures that undocumented students receive correct information about opportunities available to them after high school. High school college counselors will receive additional training incorporated into existing training courses.
  • Establishes the Illinois DREAM Fund to provide scholarships to undocumented students. The scholarships are funded entirely by contributions from private donors and organizations.

 

In order to qualify for the benefits of the Illinois DREAM Act, students must meet the following requirements:
  1. The student has resided with her/her parent or guardian while attending public or private high school in Illinois.
  2. The student has attended public or private school in Illinois for at least 3 years and received a high school diploma or GED from Illinois.
  3. The student has at least one parent who immigrated to the United States.